What was Apple's worst commercial?

in General Discussion edited January 2014
The talk about the new G5 ad got me to thinking about it.

My vote goes for the commercial for the optical mouse.

It was just terrible.

Hey look, we've got an OPTICAL (one button) mouse! Bet hey, it's OPTICAL!

Dang it, I spelled commercial wrong!


  • Reply 1 of 36
    andersanders Posts: 6,523member
    Everything twirling around on a white bagground. Especially with the 10th new product advertised like that
  • Reply 2 of 36
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    actually, "lemmings" is generally regarded as the worst, not because of its quality or direction, but because it showed the target demographic (i.e. businessmen) all leaping to their respective deaths by following the status quo. needless to say, it didn't achieve the desired effect of greater business sales. \
  • Reply 3 of 36
    pscatespscates Posts: 5,847member
    I echo the mouse one. Big $#%#$^ deal...so it's an optical mouse.

    And I suppose that Steppenwolf song was supposed to make in cool and give it some cred?


    The next time I hear "Born to Be Wild" in a movie or commercial, used to denote "rebellious freedom" or whatever, I'll puke.

    2,000 more songs that fit the bill better and all you ever hear is that lame one.

    Sadly, I'm of the opinion that pretty much all of their iEra (1998-present) commercials have sucked quite heavily.

    None have made me especially proud to be a Mac user. None have made any buddies, family or co-workers remotely consider getting a Mac, or even asking me about it (the true, sure sign of a failed campaign).

    I won't go into it, but in the past year or so, we here have casually thrown around more good ideas for commercials than Apple will ever use or realize.

    They're usually way to vague or esoteric to spark any notice or interest from a PC user. Just too "huh?". The only people who get wound up over them are current Mac users. And just the lame ones. The ones who think anything and everything from Apple is perfect and beyond question and the best ever, hands down. You know, the delusional ones.

    There ain't been one in two years that has REMOTELY made me go "holy cow...now THAT'S a commercial".

    And that's truly sad because...well, LOOK WHO IT IS: it's Apple! Of all people, you think THEY'D be capable of making some sort of eye-popping, "grab you buy the neck and make you notice and get inspired" commercial. But they haven't/don't.

    I guess they save all that for the keynote?

    How many of us have watched Jobs demo something or show off a feature or particular piece of hardware or software at a Macworld keynote and have practically cheered right along with the live audience in the auditorium? I know I have...nearly every single one (OS X, Keynote, PowerBook, iMovie, iTunes, etc.)

    Why can't THAT level of awe and excitement be translated and re-worked into a commercial? No, it doesn't have to be Jobs. But someone, actually using the hardware/software/OS and doing something other than standing there looking cute or silly?

    Would be nice.

    Okay, I have an answer for you: the worst Apple commercial? This latest crop of iTunes music store ones.

    The worst.

    UNLESS you're a current, devoted Mac-head and Apple follower, you don't know CRAP about what is being shown, why it's cool and different and how easy or neat it is to use.

    Show some greasy old ex-hippie badly singing along to an old Who song.

    Yeah, THAT'LL rake in the attention and make people take notice!

    Makes me turn the damn channel.

    By all means, don't show someone actually searching, downloading, listenign and transferring a song to their iPod? Don't highlight the 99¢ aspect of it all. don't do some sort of cool quick-cut montage showing a sample of the kindds of artists available.

    Just show some more schlumpy-looking folks (rejects from the Switch campaign, apparently) doing stuff that no one outside of the Mac universe is aware of or quite gets.

    Way to go after that other 95%, guys!


  • Reply 4 of 36
    macsrgood4umacsrgood4u Posts: 3,007member
    My least favorites:

    The spinning fruity iMacs.

    The Flower Power spot.

    The iTunes/iPod spots.

    The new G5 spot. It's everywhere and getting verrrrrrrrrrrrry boring.
  • Reply 6 of 36
    purepure Posts: 26member

    man that... th... that's just the WORSSSST Apple commercial I've ever seen. E-V-E-R.

    But anyone remember the billboard ads from the mid 90s? They were all over Toronto. I can't even recall the slogan/message or anything, because it didn't really make much sense.
  • Reply 7 of 36
    andersanders Posts: 6,523member
    But the best is this
  • Reply 8 of 36
    agent302agent302 Posts: 974member

    Originally posted by Anders

    But the best is this

    Yeah, those were a good series of ads. I liked the one where the kid and his dad were trying to use some program on a CDROM, and the kid goes over to his friends house because he has a Mac.

    My least favorite is the HAL one.
  • Reply 9 of 36
    wrong robotwrong robot Posts: 3,907member

    Originally Posted By pscates


    I won't go into it, but in the past year or so, we here have casually thrown around more good ideas for commercials than Apple will ever use or realize.


    Long post there buddy
  • Reply 10 of 36
    kelibkelib Posts: 740member
    We don't get that many off 'em this site of the Atlantic. However I remember some horrible Performa adds some 10 years back. But in general I don't like the Apple adds, they just somehow don't cut it\
  • Reply 11 of 36
    kraig911kraig911 Posts: 912member
    Personally apples ad stand out right now as it, because compare them to everyone elses and they are really way better. Show me another computer manufacturer with a better ad? i'm curious.

    My favorite was actually the HAL one... but I liked how it played on all the 2000 doom of the era, as well as being completely original and very creative. The NIKe one was the best 2000 gimmick one tho.
  • Reply 12 of 36
    pscatespscates Posts: 5,847member

    Originally posted by Wrong Robust

    Long post there buddy

    a) tell me where I was wrong, and...

    b) no one said you had to read it

  • Reply 13 of 36
    spotcatbugspotcatbug Posts: 195member
    My pick for worst is the AirPort commercial. Well, I mean I assume it was about AirPort. It's the one with an AirPort Base Station floating around like a flying saucer. What a waste of advertising $$. I mean, if you didn't already know what an ABS was (and what it looked like), you couldn't possibly make any sense out of that commercial.

    And AirPort was such a cool, new thing at the time, they really could have run with that one. But no, they have to be all artsy-fartsy. And then Dell gets to invent wireless networking a year later.
  • Reply 14 of 36
    pscatespscates Posts: 5,847member

    So true! A CLASSIC example of what I talked about earlier: it's just plain goofy and vague. Only WE knew what in the hell it was and what it did and why it was cool.

    And all the Mac community cooed and laughed and "got it". Big deal...we already do anyway. STOP MAKING AD CAMPAIGNS FOR US, APPLE! WE KNOW ALREADY!

    Make ads and campaigns that make my Mom and her friends want to throw their HPs and Dells out the window and buy an iMac IMMEDIATELY!

    Ten years of being a faithful user and believer in your company and products, and I haven't seen you do it yet. Unbelievable, really, considering...

    I guarantee you any non-Mac person seeing that commercials thought one of two things:

    1. "WHAT in the hell is this? Uh, I don't get it..."


    2. "Oh, it's just Apple. Probably something funky for graphics people that I'd have no use for".

    Meanwhile, EVERYONE has boarded the Wi-Fi gravy train and you can't swing a dead cat without seeing public hotspots, Internet cafes, wireless-enabled coffee shops, wireless products (cards, base stations, etc.) at your local Staples, Office Depot, Best Buy, etc.

    Apple had a good 2 year head start with the technology and kinda pissed it away. If not "piss it away", then certainly not doing anything to make your average PC user or newbie or whatever go "WHAT? You mean I can sit out on my patio and check my e-mail? Awesome...honey, let's go look at those iBooks this afternoon...".

  • Reply 15 of 36
    macusersmacusers Posts: 840member

    I still think this one is the worst
  • Reply 16 of 36
    gsxrboygsxrboy Posts: 565member
    An old one with a classic (or version off) sitting in like a salt plain and a piece of junk harley comes and scoops it up... GSXR750 rOxOrs and rOOls jO!!!
  • Reply 17 of 36
    thuh freakthuh freak Posts: 2,664member
    i dont dislike these current commercials as much as others (pscates ) do. sure they dont show use and they dont inform the public of what particularly makes apple products better, but they are out there. i notice an apple commercial a lot more than i do an intern commercial. i think others do too. apple commercials stand out, and make you remember the itty bits. fwiw, people see the g5, hear the name and know atleast that much about the product. they see the imacs, learned the name, and then bought them. maybe they would be more successful if they showed real use and practicality, but maybe they would blend in and be too boring for people to remember them. my favorite apple commercial was the richard dreyfuss monologue.
  • Reply 18 of 36
    pscatespscates Posts: 5,847member

    Originally posted by thuh Freak

    ...sure they dont show use and they dont inform the public of what particularly makes apple products better...

    Then WHAT, exactly, is the *#[email protected]*#%! point?!?!?! I was kinda under the impression that's what a commercial does, at some basic level.

    That's quite a "sure..." statement.

    "Sure, my surgeon didn't actually go to medical school, but..." or "sure, my car doesn't actually have tires on it, but..."

  • Reply 19 of 36
    aries 1baries 1b Posts: 1,009member

    Originally posted by pscates

    Then WHAT, exactly, is the *#[email protected]*#%! point?!?!?! I was kinda under the impression that's what a commercial does, at some basic level.


    I'll agree with you more than 100%.

    Apple has never made a good TV commerical.

    The 1984 ad came close, great introduction, but no follow through. Since then, nothing.

    I'm getting tired of supporting a team that doesn't want to show up for the game.

    The amount of inward looking and group-think evidenced by Apple's commercials is appalling. This G5 commercial is the worst. Some putz gets blown out of his house against a tree and somehow lives. There were several walls between where he was and where he wound up. Oh, there was a metal thing on his desk.

    What rubbish, what nonsense.

    Aries 1B
  • Reply 20 of 36
    rokrok Posts: 3,519member
    yes, BUT it is almost impossible to put out a spec-based commercial or a "flying pointer" commercial (as i call those windows demo-mercials) without it looking exactly the same as everything else. plus, it just ain't easy to capture onscreen user-computer interaction on a pricey 20-35 second commercial spot. not impossible, but really not easy.

    and i totally disagree -- apple has made some very good commercials. the pentium snail commercial was great, even for the non-cognescenti (and i was way newer to the mac scene back then, so don't say it was my little inner fanboy loving it). my least favorite was the "bunnies" commercial, mostly since it was based completely on an inside joke from the intel commercials at the same time (i mean, they weren't even called "bunnies" by intel, except maybe on their web site). if you weren't paying attention to those AND made the association to apple AND computers (since a computer was never even shown in said commercial), the spot was utterly lost on you. i don't mind thinking, but that asked a bit much from the average audience.

    honestly, if i ever see a spec-based commercial from apple, i may throw a shoe through the tube (no, i can't afford a flat screen plasma... yet).
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